Well... I have my new companion, Elder Carmona, and he´s awesome!! We are already way good friends, he got here Tuesday afternoon, and we have been working like dogs this week! (or should I say, like missionaries) He is from the same generation as me, just has more time in the Field because he didn´t have to learn spanish. It has helped soooooo much to have a mexican companion, My spanish has improved so much in just this week. I feel like I can understand alot more, because it´s all I hear all day. When he got here on Tuesday, he was like, you didn´t know Spanish before your mission? I told him no and he was like, well the gift of tongues is real! It was pretty cool, we don´t have any problems understanding eachother at all. We are both super excited to be so young but working together as co mayores. We want to try to do an activity with one of our wards each week, we tried to set one up last week...two people showed up. We will keep working on it. :) Being co mayor is weird but we are both learning so much faster. I havent had any problems with talking on the phone to everyone or with the area, and all the members already love Elder Carmona. He is ready to work, super obedient, super diligent, and is really good at teaching.
Elder Carmona told me that the people here in Poza Rica are alot more hard hearted than the people in his area, we are going to start trying to take some different approaches to finding people. We had a lot of cool experiences this week with investigators. Turns out Itzel does really have a strong testimony and everything....we talked to her good about everything this week and she knows its true and we are pretty sure she wants to do it for the right reasons. We were going to baptized her on friday, but she had been telling us the whole time that she was 18...turns out she was only 17 and her mom didn´t want to sign the cedula. (if you´re under 18 you have to get permision from your parents to get baptized.) So we told her to pray and fast about it (and that we would too) and explain to her mom that she´s more happy now than she ever has been. We met with her the next day and she said that she had given her mom some stuff to read in the book of mormon, and she told her parents that "the Hermanos are fasting and praying too, and the holy ghost is going to change your heart and your mind really soon. So you can either sign it now or you can wait a couple days until our prayers change you mind..." Her mom thought about it for a day and told her that she was probably going to sign it, that maybe it wasn´t such a bad thing after all. Itzel told us about all this on Sunday, and said she would try to have permision by tuesday, or at least before the weekend, so we can do the baptism then. I´ll let you know how it goes, but once again, just shows the power of fasting and prayer. I have experiences weekly that strengthen my testimony of prayer.
We found a 65 year old lady, contacted her in the street and came back to her house to visit her. She was kind of closed and hard of heart at first, I was kind of doubting a little bit that it would go anywhere, but after a while she opened up completely to us, just spilled everything, she has had a super hard life, health problems, and has to work alot to provide for her grand kids. We shared some scriptures about trials with her and taught her the Restoration. Then we asked for two glasses of water, Elder Carmona drank his and I left mine full. We asked her if she had had times in her life where she felt empty, like the glass of Elder Carmona. She told us yes, Then we read some scriptures about how baptism fills you up with joy, and showed her my glass that was full. She accepted baptism and said, well ya, I´ve never been baptized before. Then we had her say the closing prayer, the spirit was so strong, I started crying during the prayer, I havn´t done that during a lesson yet. She thanked Heavenly Father for sending us to her home to help her with her problems, and that we listened to everything and she feels like she has someone she can trust and who can help her. She told us after the prayer thank you for listening to everything, that she had never been so open with anyone like that. So we are pretty excited to continue teaching her.
I really feel like I´m starting to change alot. I feel like I´m really starting to love the people we are teaching and now that I can really communicate better with the members and the people, I feel like I can really express everything better and I´m just super super happy right now. I don´t know how to describe it, I just love my mission!!
I love you all soooooo much, good to hear that everything is going well!!
Can´t wait to talk to everyone on Mother´s day!! Love you all!!
Elder Eastmond Jr.